Monday, January 21, 2013

La La Loopsie Look a Like

Posted by Paulette

Don't you just love it when your child tells you the night before a birthday party? Chris did a few months ago and so I went to Target to buy a gift for the little girl. I was  told that that the La La Loopsie dolls were popular with little girls. I couldn't believe the price! For a rag doll?

I make more intricate dolls all the time. I can make one of those!
So, when I had more notice this time, I made one. Meet Daisy.

 I eve gave her some ruffle butt panties. I only used stuff from my stash. So, I feel like she was free to make.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Valentine Mantel in Aqua and Pink

Posted by Paulette

I decided to do an unconventional mantel for Valentine's Day this year. I love turquoise/ aqua, and how often do I get to put it together with pink?

For the most part, I just collected things that I already had around the house from years past. The new stuff on this mantel are the gate, which was made in two days from some scrap plywood. It's crooked! I don't mind. It's all part of the character. The "LOVE" sign, which I got from Hobby Lobby was on sale of course, and the heart box are also new.

 It's a paper mache` box that I spray painted in oil rubbed bronze, and then dry brushed white craft paint over. The lid is in two parts. Th insert under the lacy part was left bronze. Then I hot glued a key hole from Tim Holtz to the side of the box. The keys hang from the lantern.

I really wish I was able to get better quality pictures of this, and some of the close ups turned out really well. I'm still working on using my phone until I buy a new camera.
After I took these pictures, I took some leftover paper from the banner and cut out little hearts and overturned the little pitcher on the left and made it look as if they are spilling out of it.

Are You A Mary or Martha?

Posted by Paulette

As I study the lives of Mary and Martha, sisters and friends of Christ, from the Bible, I wonder to myself, "am I Mary or Martha?"

Christ in the home of Mary and Martha by David Lindsey
 To answer this question, I have to look at the actions of both women. 
The scriptures say,
Luke  10: 38-42
When Jesus came into town, Martha was the first to welcome him into their home. She went about making a meal for him, while Mary sat at his feet and listened to him teach. When she noticed that her sisters was being idle and leaving all of the work to Martha, she complained to Jesus, and asked him to tell Mary to help.

Just this example isn't enough to determine the personalities of the two sisters.

by Nathan Greene

St John 11
When their brother was dying, Mary and Martha sent word to Jesus to come. When he didn't come and their brother died they mourned his death. Jesus purposefully came many days later. In the Jewish culture it was believed that the spirit of the person lingered for 3 days before leaving the body. Jesus came on the fourth day.
Martha met him outside of town and asked him why he didn't come earlier. That if he had, her brother wouldn't have died. But she knew that he still had the power to raise her brother, Lazarus from the dead. 
Mary was in the house with the mourners, and when she heard that Jesus was in town, she also went to him sorrowing and said the same things that her sister had. Both had faith that Jesus was the Son of God who would be resurrected and that He had power to raise the dead. 
Martha warns Jesus that Lazarus has lain in the grave for 4 days and he "stinketh." 
I believe that she was concerned about Jesus health and well being. Jewish tradition had taboos and cleansing ceremonies surrounding the dead, and contact with them. 

artist unknown

There's another story that may add to the discussion.

Later, during the week before Christ's crucifixion,  Mary anoints Christ's  feet with a very expensive oil, and rubs it in with her hair.

Clearly both sisters had great faith. Both loved Christ as if he were family, and were comfortable enough to speak with him intimately.

I think that Martha had some mothering instincts. She was concerned about the bodily health of Jesus and made sure that she took care of him. 
Mary understood that He had something to impart to her. And that He wouldn't be around very long, and she wanted to spend as much time with him as possible. She showed her devotion in the anointing him with oil.
I recently read a book entitled, The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman. In it he explains that we all give and receive love in different ways. Some people love by giving gifts, or spending time with someone, or by touch. 
I believe that Mary and Martha had different ways of showing love to our Savior.   
When Martha complained about Mary not helping her, Jesus didn't tell her that what she was doing was wrong. He did tell her that what Mary was doing wasn't wrong either. I believe it was His way of saying, " Martha, I'm not going to be with you for very long. The meal that you are making will fill my belly for a short time, but the spiritual food that I am giving to Mary, will be with her always. Do not begrudge her this opportunity."
We all act as Mary or Martha at any given time in our lives. There is a time to work hard, and serve others. We need to remember to feed ourselves spiritually. When we do, we won't feel resentment in our service of others. 
The answer to the above question, is both.

What do you think?  


Friday, January 18, 2013

Almost Passed Up This Treasure

Posted by Paulette

My favorite time to go thrifting is the Saturday after payday. Besides the obvious reason of having money to spend, it's also half price Saturday at our local Goodwills.
My favorite person to go with, has the same taste in decor as I do. She found this lovely addition to my living room. When Clarissa showed it to me, I couldn't see past the country kitchyness until she told me what she would do with it.

   I love the board and batten look, but I haven't decided to spend the time on money on it. But this cutie gives me the same kind of feel. The larger frame had wooden cutouts hanging from jute t wine across the whole thing. I'm not sure what the original owner was thinking. Maybe decorating for every season at once? Again, this post would have benefited from a before picture. We pulled all that stuff and re-donated it, right there on the spot.

The smaller frames inside are just cheapy frames from Ikea and Wal-mart that I painted and glazed. Originally I tried hanging them from the wall in the traditional fashion. But when they got crooked, they'd drive me crazy. So they are stuck to the wall with poster tack. It's a silly puddy kind of stuff.  The thingy (yes that is a word) at the top is from Hobby Lobby. 

It satisfied my need for some decor in that space, whithout being too in your face. I've put a few things there over the years and they were just off.

And to think. I almost passed it by. Thanks to a friend with a great eye and imagination,  I brought it home with me.


A Simple Solution For a Common Problem

Posted by Paulette

For some reason, the inside of a refrigerator or freezer is the first to show wear and tear. The plastic become brittle and breaks. What do you do? I picked the brain of an appliance repair man one day, and he and I came up with this solution to the missing shelf fronts on my freezer door.

Those "baskets" are only fronts that have been stapled into the door with my staple gun. Mr appliance guy said that a few tiny holes wouldn't interfere with the performance of my freezer and suggested that I just screw the shelf brackets back in. I told him that they were long gone, and the brain stormed this idea instead.

All it took was some hardware mesh cloth, which you can find in the garden center of any home improvement center. It comes in rolls. You can cut it with wire cutters. That's exactly what I did. I measured out how much I would need and then added some to the top and bottom for "hems" and some to the sides for wrap around. And then...
 Stapled it to the sides and bottom of the freezer door. The shelves still have some movement to them, which makes putting stuff in and taking it out easier.

Have you found an uncommon solution to a common problem?

Valentine Wreath

Posted by Paulette

 I admit it. I'm a copy cat. I searched for some inspiration for making a valentine wreath, and found a beautiful one on Etsy, here.
(So if you want to buy one, you know where to go.)
I repurposed a wreath from the thrift store (where else?), and used clearance berries from Christmas. I really like these because they look frosty.
The frosty bits of grassy stuff are also from Christmas clearance. They were originally a branch of pine. I just snipped off the needles. 
   The original had linen and burlap rag roses, Mine are muslin and some miscellaneous re fabric I found. 

 And the heart. I found this for a quarter at a thrft store and repainted it. I love red and white mattress ticking. It's all over the place in my house, and I've almost used up the stuff I got long ago.

This wreath is just the right amount of Valentine with a hint of winter frost, which I am so glad we are done with for the year! 

Another One Bites the Dust!

Posted by Paulette

I try not to get too attached to my things. If the kids break something, it's usually from a thrift store and I didn't pay much for it, so I just say, "oh well." and move on and clean up the mess.

Today was different. While taking pictures of a cute new project, I dropped my camera. I've only had it for a year, and for me, it wasn't cheap!

So Rest In Peace Canon Power Shot Elph. You served me well.
Time to start saving some money for a new one.

Here's the last picture it took before it crashed to it's death on my unyielding concrete porch.
The good news is that I was able to pull the pictures off of the card. So I will be sharing some of the fun things that I was doing before this tragedy struck.
And until I get a new camera, I will be learning how to use the camera on my Droid better...I hope.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Paisley Pillows

Posted by Paulette

My living room is finally starting to look the way I've envisioned it. I'm still making new pillow covers to replace the dingy stained ones. These turned out better than I though they would. 
 For some reason I got major block when shoppinfor the fabric for these pillows! I walked into Joann Fabrics and felt like I was in a fog. My original choice was horrid! I finished one cover and threw it into the donate pile. 
Then I went to Hobby Lobby. I love that place! But I get kinda hypnotized when I walk in there. Overload on the inspiration! I have to go with a list, otherwise I forget why I'm even there.
When I first saw this fabric, I wasn't on love with it, but I knew it would work.
It kinda reminded me of something on Miss Mustard Seed's blog, so I was sure that it would be wonderful.

I made two.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

It's a Sign...No Two

Posted by Paulette

When we moved into this house I fell in love with all othe beautiful arched door ways, and the columns in the front entry way. I was less enthused with the 80's Sante Fe Southwest vibe that was incorporated all throughout the house. The peach and aqua tile will be switch out for something more classic, in time. But for now little things can be done to transform the decor. 

There used to be a chili peppers I love chili peppers in my cooking! Just not in my decor, so after living with it for almost 10  years, ( yikes has it really been that long?) it had to go.


I don't have one of those fancy schmancy die cut machines. Although my friend does, I couldn't wait to start and finish this project, so I just plugged along in my own way, using my printer. 

I started off with a chalk board background and then went to to add the script. I couldn't get it large enough for my sign, so I had to fiddle around with my printer adjusting the size until it spit out what I needed. I used rubbed chalk on the back of the numbers to transfer them to my already painted board. 
Then I used a small flat and script liner brushes to paint in the numbers. Once that was dry the sign got two coats of polyurethane. 

If I'd thought ahead, I would have predrilled my holes before painting the sign, because I had to do some touch up work.

sign number Two:

Same process here. After I was done hanging it, I brought David, my wonderful husband, out to see it and asked him if it didn't look nice and friendly. He said,"sure. All we need now is a pretty door mat done in curly script that says GO AWAY!." Hahahahaha! I love that man. But at least it gets my point across. And the bread people are still selling at our door. I'm glad it didn't scare them off.

Monday, January 14, 2013

My Artistic Autistic Son

Posted by Paulette

My first son, Hyrum has been asked to illustrate a children's book. These are the first pictures that he's done.

We are hoping that the author will like these and hire him for the job. Hyrum's artistic talent was apparent at a very young age.

I knew there was something different about my son when he was just a few months old and imitating the sound of my drill while I hung curtains in out new apartment. This is the baby that had to be held down to get him to sleep. He was transfixed with the Christmas tree lights.

I didn't know how different he was until he picked up a pencil and began to draw. Somehow at the age of four, he already knew about perspective. When you asked him what color the clouds were, he's say, "blue, yellow, pink, and gray."
When it came time for him to attend school, I looked for something that would encourage his creativity. Originally I signed him up to go to a Montessori school around the corner from our house, but he was number 14 on the waiting list. One day a door hanger showed up on our front porch advertising a charter school that was in the next city over, and focused mainly on academics, but included the arts. I knew it was a perfect fit for him.

In the third grade, he began to falter. He had no buddies, and was beginning to fail some of his subjects. I started studying up on what it might be that was holding him back. One day my mother called and told me that she suspected that he has Asperger's Syndrome. After reading quite a bit on the subject, and a psych evaluation at his school, I made an appointment at a developmental pediatrician. 

His doctor gave him some written and physical tests, interviewed me, and after an hour we had a diagnosis. Hyrum had Asperger's Syndrome or "high functioning autism." 

I was both relieved and scared at the same time. I wasn't sure what roads we would travel. We began with an IEP (Individual Education Plan) the next year, and Hyrum improved academically and socially by leaps and bounds. 

He is now in 7th grade, and a rather large junior high school; the largest in the city (Almost 1300 students). He still has his struggles and we are fine tuning his IEP. I am still studying about autism, and the more I learn, the more I can pass on to his teachers to help him in the classroom. 

He has friends that LOVE him. I am hoping that he will develop many rich relationships throughout his life time. His Father also is an Aspie, and I am so fortunate to have met and married him. I wouldn't trade him for anyone.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

French Farmhouse style hamper

Posted by Paulette

I really need to learn to take before pictures! I bought a cute storage box with a cover from Goodwill. It was cute...before a cat got it's claws into it. Originally it was covered in a weave of brown fabric and sea grass. And let me tell you, if it wasn't $1 I wouldn't have messed with it. All of that stuff was stapled on with hundreds of tiny staples! It took hours to get it all off. And I suffered with allergies to cat dander the whole time. And why you ask? Because I had visions of a pretty French style hamper. Something like this:

 I used some leftover drop cloth canvas to cover the box on the outside, stapling it to the wood, and then cut the hardware cloth and bent and stapled that to the box too. The liner was made from part of a flat sheet.

My version:
 It works perfectly with French/spa style bathroom!
It's just the right size to hold clothes for two people for a couple of days. No more leaving our unmentionables on the floor. It sits right next to the shower.

Sharing at:
Craftberry Bush
Jennifer Rizzo  
Feathered Nest Friday
Transformation Thursday

Hand Painted Poppy Pillow

Posted by Paulette

It's been a while since I started noticing staining on the pillow covers in the living room. I love the covers I've sewn, but the stains just won't come out, and the repair job on one of them isn't very attractive. It's time for new covers.

 I hate buying fabrics full price. Usually I find something to make over from the thrift store. I love to find a curtain, because it's usually a few yards of fabric for just a few dollars. 

 Home decorator fabrics are so expensive! I could use a coupon, or I could design my own. I've kept the scraps of canvas drop cloth left over from making slipcovers for the couch and loveseat. There really isn't much left, but I've managed to get a couple of projects out of it. 

One of my favorite bloggers, Lucy at Craftberry Bush, painted some really cute totes this year. She painted directly onto the fabric with acrylics. ( I LOVE her blog. There's so many inspiring things that she makes.) I decided to give it a try. I started out with a picture, and using graphite paper, transferred the image onto my canvas, then I painted away. I soon learned that I couldn't use too much water, or it would bleed the color outside the lines.

 Once the paint was dry, I made some welting with some red and white ticking and sewed the pillow cover. I love how it turned out, and will certainly be making more. 

I love this red throw. I found it at Goodwill on a half price Saturday just before Christmas, for $4.  It's so cozy, and adds a great pop of color. So I paid $2. I adore a bargain.

Sharing at:
    Craftberry Bush
 Jennifer Rizzo 
Feathered Nest Friday
 Transformation Thursday